Hydroxyzine use while Breastfeeding
Drugs containing Hydroxyzine: Vistaril, Atarax, Marax, Hyzine, Vistazine, Marax DF, Hydrophed, Ami-rax, Hydroxy Compound, Theomax DF
Hydroxyzine Levels and Effects while Breastfeeding
Summary of Use during Lactation
Small occasional doses of hydroxyzine would not be expected to cause any adverse effects in breastfed infants. Larger doses or more prolonged use may cause drowsiness and other effects in the infant or decrease the milk supply, particularly in combination with a sympathomimetic such as pseudoephedrine or before lactation is well established. Other agents are preferred, especially while nursing a newborn or preterm infant.
Maternal Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.
Infant Levels. Relevant published information was not found as of the revision date.
Effects in Breastfed Infants
In one telephone follow-up study, mothers reported irritability and colicky symptoms 10% of infants exposed to various antihistamines and drowsiness was reported in 1.6% of infants. None of the reactions required medical attention.
All adverse reactions in breastfed infants reported in France over the dates January 1985 to June 2011 were compiled by a French pharmacovigilance center. Of 174 reports, hydroxyzine was one of the drugs most often suspected in serious adverse reactions.
Possible Effects on Lactation
Antihistamines in relatively high doses given by injection can decrease basal serum prolactin in nonlactating women and in early postpartum women. However, suckling-induced prolactin secretion is not affected by antihistamine pretreatment of postpartum mothers. Whether lower oral doses of antihistamines have the same effect on serum prolactin or whether the effects on prolactin have any consequences on breastfeeding success have not been studied. The prolactin level in a mother with established lactation may not affect her ability to breastfeed.
Alternate Drugs to Consider
1. Ito S, Blajchman A, Stephenson M et al. Prospective follow-up of adverse reactions in breast-fed infants exposed to maternal medication. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1993;168:1393-9. PMID: 8498418
2. Lacroix I, Soussan C, Portolan G, Montastruc JL. Drug-induced adverse reactions via breastfeeding: a study in the French Pharmacovigilance Database. Fundam Clin Pharmacol. 2013;27 (Suppl 1):42-3. Abstract 26-01. DOI: doi:10.1111/fcp.12025
3. Messinis IE, Souvatzoglou A, Fais N et al. Histamine H1 receptor participation in the control of prolactin secretion in postpartum. J Endocrinol Invest. 1985;8:143-6. PMID: 3928731
4. Pontiroli AE, De Castro e Silva E, Mazzoleni F et al. The effect of histamine and H1 and H2 receptors on prolactin and luteinizing hormone release in humans: sex differences and the role of stress. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1981;52:924-8. PMID: 7228996
CAS Registry Number
LactMed Record Number
Information from the National Library of Medicine's LactMed Database.
Last Revision Date
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